We stayed in town the past several weekends enjoying the pleasures of City Living and the absence of Country Chores. We were unconcerned about leaving our tree up at Darlington House, unattended, as this Christmas was the first in thirteen years that we did not set up a real tree that we sawed down in the woods. As you may recall, this season we had an old-fashioned feather tree from Bunny Williams' wonderful shop, Treillage. No watering required, and no worries about arriving at Darlington House after our extended absence to find a neglected, dessicated, tinder-box of a tree.
Even so, upon arriving this afternoon, we agreed that it was imperative that the tree be taken down immediately.
Boy then made quick work of unhooking the more than two hundred ornaments hung on the tree and sorting them, by color and form, safely on a bath towel on the dining room table. That will make the task—to be done tomorrow morning—of placing them in their correct, color-organized storage containers most efficient.
Although we were privately mortified to have had our tree up for so many weeks beyond the start of the New Year, we took pleasure in having one last luncheon this afternoon under its glittering magic.
Tell me, Dear Reader, do you have a strict timetable for making your Christmas tree vanish?
Photograph by Boy Fenwick
It is a wide-spread tradition in these parts that it is not good to still have Christmas decorations up on January 1. However, I give myself a margin until Epiphany. Some local neighborhood associations and/or (small) municipalities enforce a January 15 deadline for removing exterior decorations other than a wreath on the door.ReplyDelete
In our village we are lucky to find exterior Christmas decorations taken down by Valentines Day. They almost all go up the day after Thanksgiving, too,Delete
When the needles really start dropping, our garbage man gets a $10 handshake and the tree vanishes.ReplyDelete
If you cut down your tree freshly in the woods, as we do, you may find that needles remain reslient and pliant for six or more weeks, ardly sheeding them at all.Delete
On the prairie the Christmas tree season seems to be Thanksgiving to Christmas -- and not a day beyond! I like to keep ours up a bit longer -- at least to New Year's but prefer Epiphany but I'm in a minority.ReplyDelete
I wish I had the discipline to put a tree as early as Thnksgiving. That way I would be able to enjoy it gult-free through the Holidays. What a good idea!Delete
We keep our tree up until Orthodox Christmas which is celebrated on January 7th.ReplyDelete
A very wise move.Delete
The greens on the mantel and armoire where refreshed twice, having been put up the second week of December, finally giving up the ghost January 2nd- not quite making it to Epiphany as planned. And as odd as it sounds, I always see a long dead tree magically appear on the sidewalk the week of July 4th which never ceases to amaze.ReplyDelete
I think Epiphany is the desired (and approrpriate) cut off point for Christmas decoractions.Delete
That must have been pleasant having lunch and enjoying the tree one more time. What an enormous amount of ornaments for Boy to sort.ReplyDelete
We celebrate the Epiphany and the tree is removed Jan 7.
Epiphany it is, my dear Ms, Tilston!Delete
Well, we used to have a strict rule about taking it down on New Years Day. Frankly, that made New Years Day rather glum. So some time ago we changed our minds and left it up until Epiphany. Much nicer, much more relaxed and we get to enjoy it a little longer. It is always a live tree though, so we have to be diligent about watering.ReplyDelete
By the 26th I am itching... but I grin and bear it until the 1st, unless I am out late (unlikely)on New Year's.ReplyDelete
BTW I see Slim's orange slices up front and center...hmmm. Let's just say I am still pea green and if you don't find them next year, well I guess a little mouse just stashed them away!
You see correctly, my eagle-eyed chum. Thems orange slices be mine!Delete
I think it is wonderful that you and Boy could spend time in the city and not be concerned about the tree at Darlington House!!ReplyDelete
Art by Karena
Ah, such fun...variety is the spice of life!ReplyDelete
I prefer to remove the tree and door wreaths by Epiphany, but alas I am in the minority here. One would think nobody goes to church when they jump on me and I have to explain my actions.ReplyDelete
Another epiphany devotee...Delete
Reggie...like me, you are an Episcopalian...so it comes down the day after Epiphany here on the Main Line.ReplyDelete
Agreed MLS, Epiphany really shoud be the cut off point. Thank you!Delete
I think that the fact you had the "Treillage " feather-tree throws the whole old-fashioned calendar rules into the ash-can; actually!ReplyDelete
May I see a picture?
(Half of the things in our house that we built here in Montecito has many and myriad elements from "Treillage"); throws a whole different "wrench into the works!"
I imagine that perhaps with a "feather tree" this could stay up all year 'round??!!??
Will;l have to see picture to be sure!
Imagine...a shop whose taste is so positive.....to even raise that possibility!
A richly deserved compliment to Bunny and John Roselli!
If it is as good as it is in my imagination.......I am thinking the "Ides of March" would be a good time to put away. Now I will ruminate on when to put it up again!
(are we totally positive this is not a year-round thing?)
I need to see it. I have never seen a "feather tree"
Here is a funny one; as I was a "problem child"; In Pasadena California; I was sent to a boarding school in Northampton, Massachusetts........in 1960. (Mary Burnham School for Girls). Many girls there thought we were a bunch of cowboys and Indians.......out there...in California ..(and my fantastical stories I made up about the place just exaggerated their fear and trepidations!)
Many of these girls asked if we even had "Christmas trees" ; because they even knew then we had no snow.
If I had known about "feather trees" I would and could have confused them even more!!!
Good grief! The stories I could have made up!
I have mentioned on other comments.......there are still women (over 60)
Who believe that I actually could "catch a wave on my board" from my front porch in Pasadena to surf.
(Pasadena is about 30 miles inland from the nearest beach.º It was the days of the "Beach Boys" songs........ and the "surfer's stomp"; and the "surfer's shuffle"; (those are very cool dances at the time!) I taught all the girls the dances with the "45" records!!!
It was the most fun I had in that "prison" of a school!
It was really fun; and pretty much the only fun!
I guess my imagination got me through!
Oh Please, a picture!
Thank you for your comment. You can see a pivture or two of the tree in all its decorated glory in an earlier post, titled "Oh, Christmas Tree!" I hope you approve of Boy's handywork!
At Sandringham the Queen leaves all the decorations up until February 1st. You're in good company.ReplyDelete
Thank uou, Paul, for such a reassurance, it is most calming to my frazzled nerves to know taht I am in such august cmpany.Delete
If we are at home at Christmas our tree is bought early on Christmas Eve, decorated that evening after dinner and then removed on the afternoon of New Year's Eve. We used to leave it until Twelfth Night but no longer.ReplyDelete
It's the law to take it down before Twelfth night - January 5th.ReplyDelete
Fear not Reggie, I shall invoke good pixies to take away any ill luck that this may bring your way!
Agrred -- twelfth night or Epiphany, and aren't they the same thing?Delete
Well, you COULD say that you simply always leave it up for the entire duration of the liturgical season of Epiphany, which ends at Candlemas on February 2nd.ReplyDelete
January 2nd... begone:)ReplyDelete
What a great autumnal palette. I bet you could do something with them for Thanksgiving. Do the orange slices keep from year to year?--Road to ParnassusReplyDelete
I always take it down on or before Epiphany, Jan. 6th. When I was a little girl I thought Boxing day was so named because you were supposed to put away all of the gift boxes and put the decorations back in their boxes.ReplyDelete
I think Reggie and Boy are elegant lumberjacks.ReplyDelete
The bounty of tree decor is just as beautiful when deforested.
Your humble reader,
I got mine down two weeks ago. And felt myself just within the deadline. BTW, when are you coming to visit?:)ReplyDelete
Our tree comes down whenever the mood strikes.ReplyDelete
I may be able to clear up the Mr. Shigo's mystery, though. All of the neighborhood trees used to end up in our back yard to be used as forts. Every time I'd try to get rid of them, the kids would swear they were still playing in them. But by July, they were either completely bored or the trees were too scratchy and out they would finally go.
I do miss the year-round Christmas lights (but not mine, I swear!) now that our neighborhood is becoming *gentrified,*
We usually take ours down on Jan 1. It gives one something to do if one doesn't enjoy football. I was going to mention Her Majesty, but I see M. de Bedee has already done that.ReplyDelete
I was also raised Episcopal, so Epiphany was something of a deadline for getting Xmas entirely out of the house. Now I live in San Francisco where we have an annual beach bonfire for the Friends of the Rootless Forest, which is generally the Sunday after New Year's. so if I am not having a Twelfth Night party or participating in a yule pyre, January 6th is the day we pack it up.ReplyDelete
I also think your color coordinated ornaments are a dream.
When I was staying with friends in the Rockies one Christmas I swear you could have seen the town from the moon it was so lit up. Imagine my surprise, when a few years later, staying again in the summer, the decorations were still there. The exterior ones, at least. I can't vouch for the interior.ReplyDelete
Reggie, should someone call attention to your tree's presence after Epiphany, what you need to do is just pretend that you are celebrating Mardi Gras.ReplyDelete
We down in New Orleans do take off our regular Christmas ornaments, but we leave the tree up and re-decorate it for Mardi Gras. Mine is decorated with beads I've caught, my "ornaments" are the painted pendants of each krewe's annual necklace, and my tree is topped with a Muse shoe.
Not quite traditional, but certainly amusing and fun!
I love the picture you paint dahhling! though mortified as you were, I loved how you manage to get one last luncheon under its glittering magic! how FAB indeed.ReplyDelete
Our tradition: We watch the Rose Parade and take down the tree.ReplyDelete
Down South, one best have the Christmas tree prior to 1 January - - or else, bad luck will plague you all of the New Year.ReplyDelete